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Lafayette Jeff's Richardson hopes prep school leads to Division I basketball shot
June 12, 2012Lafayette Jefferson High School
Rashad Richardson could have started his college basketball career at a junior college or other non-Division I institution this fall.
Instead, the Lafayette Jeff guard has put that option on hold for one year.
Richardson said he is in the process of enrolling at The Kiski School, a prep school located in Saltsburg, Pa. Richardson will play basketball there while finishing up the final requirements for meeting the Division I academic qualifying standards.
“I thought it was a real good environment,” said Richardson, who visited the campus with his family last Thursday. “It’s pretty much just like a college in the way they run things.
“I thought by going this route I could really reach my full potential and play at the level I feel I’m capable of playing.”
According to Jeff coach Scott Radeker, one of the Division I programs that expressed interest in Richardson, Middle Tennessee State, suggested Kiski. Radeker said there is no binding agreement between MTSU and Richardson for helping him land at Kiski, though Richardson said he could end up there if the coming year goes as planned.
“I think it’s an awesome route for him to go through now,” Radeker said. “It will allow him to focus on nothing but academics and basketball. He’ll mature more as a student and more as a player that year he’s there.”
Richardson earned Journal & Courier Big School Player of the Year recognition after averaging 23.7 points, 8.7 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 2.4 steals as a senior. The 6-foot-5 guard missed much of his junior year after breaking both of his wrists in separate incidents.
That’s one reason Radeker believes Richardson has been underrecruited. Richardson hopes another year of improvement, and a season of competition against other strong prep school talent, will change that.
“I want to see myself improve in all areas,” Richardson said. “Fundamentally, improve in strength, explosiveness, and study the game more as far as my basketball IQ. Understanding the concepts more and things like that. Any element I can improve my game I’m definitely looking to do so.”
Richardson said he hopes to receive an aid package to cover the $40,000-plus cost of attendance. One reason he chose prep school over junior college is he will have a full four years of NCAA eligibility left after the coming school year.
The school encourages involvement in numerous activities, and Richardson said he has considered giving soccer and track and field a try. He thinks they could help his stamina and footwork on the basketball court.
“I think one of the biggest upsides for him is I don’t think he’s even tapped his potential as a player yet,” Radeker said. “He’s 6-5, long and athletic; he can finish with either hand around the basket. He’s got an awesome work ethic and most importantly, he’s a good person. He’s going to listen to you and he’s very coachable.